New York & DC

Trip Start Aug 18, 2008
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11
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Trip End Feb 01, 2009


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Flag of United States  , South Carolina
Monday, October 27, 2008

Hi all - just an update on  our trek to New York and D.C.  I think my last entry was just coming in to New York State.  We had to stay about 50 miles out as there's really nowhere close that doesn't cost an arm and a leg.  Even so, it was 50.00 at this site - the most expensive to date.  We opted for a tour which we have never done before always preferring to explore on our own but Rick wasn't up to braving New York freeways and the nightmare that parking would bring.  
 
Our first stop after the 1 hour commute was to Ellis Island, a short ferry ride away.  Didn't really think this was somewhere I would go on my own but it was so informative and well laid out that it made you want to read all the fascinating stories of the years between late 1800 and early 1900 when all immigrants were processed thru there.  From there we hopped on another ferry to Liberty Island.  The Statue of Liberty is pretty impressive both from the water and up close.  We were a little disappointed that we could not climb up to the top.  Apparently, after 9/11 they no longer allow it. 
 
After leaving there, we headed into the city.  Our driver was very knowledgable and we had a running commentary on history, sites, best restaurants etc.  We drove by Wall Street but you can't drive down the street after 9/11.  You see so much on the downtown area on the news, movies etc. that it almost seemed familiar.   Ground Zero was pretty amazing although there is so much construction going on now that it's hard to imagine what it looked like a few years ago.  Lots of tributes everywhere.   After a number of different landmark stops, we headed to Times Square.  AMAZING to say the least.  It was 3:00 in the afternoon and it was wall to wall people.  So vibrant and crazy busy.  Would have liked to spend a day there.   We took a drive down Broadway where there is 42 different shows playing - usually 2 shows a day - about $125.00 a pop and they are sold out every day.  There was a lineup a mile long to get same day tickets.  We managed to pick up some New York cheesecake which was the best.  A quick trip thru Central Park and then a long trip home.  Traffic was insane - took over 2 hrs. to go 50 miles. 
 
We took a couple days to recover from our whirlwind tour in Ghettysburg - Charming little town filled with historical accounts of the battle of Ghettysburg etc.  A lot of homes  from the area were pre-war and amazingly preserved.
 
From there we headed into Washington.  We stayed about 45 minutes out and this time did our own thing.  The bus and metro system are incredibly efficient and cheap.  I can't even begin to explicate what the Smithsonian was like.  There are 11 different museums - all of which are FREE!  We had picked out about 4 for that morning.  4 hours later, we had been thru  1 -the Museum of Natural History.  We realized we needed another day.  It was awesome.   We were having some of the best weather to date and here we were inside so we headed out to the "Mall"  I'm not really into monuments but they are pretty impressive.   Did a ton of walking - saw all the required sites ie: White House, Capitol Hill, Botanical Gardens  etc.  By 5:00 we could hardly stand so headed home to return for more the next day.  I won't bore you with more details but suffice it to say I learned more history in the past week than I ever did in school.    Washington is a fantastic place to visit and I highly recommend it.  After a couple more days of travelling we have finally landed at our half way destination.  MYRTLE BEACH, SOUTH CAROLINA.  Today was 70 and very humid.  We're right on the beach.  I'm in heaven.  TTFN  - R&D
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